The City created this competition 'to recognize and celebrate excellence in the design of our urban enivronment.' Here are the 2011 winners.
By Martin Hering
Published November 21, 2011
The city created this competition, which takes place every other year, "to recognize and celebrate excellence in the design of our urban environment". This year, there were 36 submissions from owners, architects, and citizens.
The awards jury included four experts: two architects from Toronto (Stasia Bogdan, Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, and Bruce Cudmore, EDA Collaborative) and two urban planners from the City of Hamilton (Tim McCabe, General Manager, Planning and Economic Development, and Paul Mallard, Director of Planning).
The jury decided to create six categories for the 2011 Urban Design and Architecture Awards: Restoration, Architecture and Sustainability, Architecture, Urban Design, Adaptive Reuse, Landscape Architecture, and Healthy Communities.
It gave out 13 awards in total. In addition, there was a People's Choice Award for the project that received the most online votes.
Below, you will find a summary of the jury's comments on the winners in each category, with links to photos and information (usually from the architects' webpages). For an overview of the names of the owners, architects, and other members of the design team, you can visit the City's webpage.
There is also a very nice map of the locations of all projects, which was created by the Hamilton Spectator.
All jury members were highly impressed by the Lister Block, which received an Award of Outstanding Achievement and Excellence in Restoration. They noted that the Lister is also a showcase of urban design, adaptive reuse, and community renewal.
Lister Block corner detail (RTH file photo)
Hamilton City Hall, like the Lister Block a designated heritage property, got an Award of Merit in Restoration since "[t]he many interior features and design details of the building that give the building its architectural identity were protected during the restoration."
Our restored Hambly House received an Award of Honorable Mention from the jury.
The jury was very impressed by the CANMET Materials Technology Laboratory and awarded this project the highest honor in the Architecture and Sustainability category. The jury called it a "tour-de-force of passive and active sustainable technologies".
Awards of Merit were given to St. Matthew Catholic Elementary School, which features a green roof and an outdoor classroom, and to the Learning Exchange at Mohawk College, which has a curtain wall of coloured glass that appears at night "as a lit mural of vibrant colours and shapes".
Mohawk College Learning Exchange (RTH file photo)
The Award of Excellence in Urban Design went to the Branthaven Beach House, a townhouse development on Beach Boulevard. The jury liked the public promenade which "is an inviting feature visually framed by townhouse blocks and lined by trees, painted pergolas, enhanced paving, and seating".
The jury gave an Award of Merit in Urban Design to Bridgewater Court, a New-Urbanism-style townhouse development by Hamilton City Housing, which it sees as "a successfully planned development where the automobile is not a dominate driver of the design ".
It gave another Award of Merit in Urban Design to the Good Shepherd Women's Services Centre, calling it a "successful urban design strategy that is aware and sensitive of the surrounding context". Even though the Centre is a single building, its facade gives the appearance of several buildings.
The jury recognized the West Avenue Residences, a 19th-century school building that was converted to affordable housing units, with an Award of Excellence in Adaptive Reuse. Even an unpleasant gymnasium addition from the 1950s was successfully incorporated into this project.
An Award of Merit in Adaptive Reuse went to St. Thomas Lofts, a red-brick church that was divided into affordable apartments.
The jury regarded the Edible Landscape in the forecourt of City Hall as a "creative approach to landscape architecture in raising awareness about our food" and recognized it with an Award of Excellence in Landscape Architecture.
The new MacNab Transit Terminal received an Award of Merit in Healthy Communities because it provides "a well functioning and a visually pleasing high quality environment" for public transit users.
The C Hotel By Carmen's received an Award of Merit in Architecture from the jury which noted its "variation in the form and exterior materials of the building".
The People's Choice Award, which was given to the project that received the largest number of online votes, went to the Multi-Tenant Office Building in the Ancaster Business Park.